The Aang Avatar State is one of the most powerful modes that the character has been in over the years in the franchise. Aang is most powerful during the Avatar State, and we have seen him use it multiple times in The Last Airbender, and even in The Legend of Korra. Here’s what happened each time he used it.
All Avatars have the distinct ability to enter the Avatar state; which is pretty much a super mode that allows them to bend all the elements at the same time. But there is more to the Avatar state than meets the eye. The Avatar state lets an Avatar access past memories from previous Avatars – and perform feats of bending that are astronomical. After all, the Avatar state grants Avatars access to cosmic energy. What’s more, the Avatar state lets the current Avatar take the appearance of a past Avatar; just like we saw the Avatar state turn Aang into Kyoshi.
The power that comes with the Avatar State can be very dangerous, however, as only Avatars who master a balanced state of mind are able to control it. The Avatar’s eyes glow (in the case of Airbenders, their tattoos glow as well) whenever they are in the Avatar State.
Those who have mastered the use of the Avatar state only see their eyes glow at the moment they enter the Avatar State instead of continuously. Avatars might also enter the Avatar State by accident if they find themselves in danger or are in an extremely emotional place.
Throughout the three seasons of Avatar: The Last Airbender, Aang is shown using the Avatar State several times and for a variety of reasons. He entered the Avatar State to save his life and out of anger or sadness; but the Avatar State also came in handy purposefully. Aang eventually learned to master the State too and was shown using it again during The Legend of Korra. This is everytime that we see the Avatar State and what happened.
The Aang Avatar State: Aang’s Return After 100 Years
We first see the Aang Avatar state in the very first episode of The Last Airbender. Aang emerges from an iceberg after 100 years of being missing. We are told later that Aang only entered the Avatar State after he crashed into the ocean during a storm. The Aang Avatar State in this instance activated to save him and Appa from drowning. It left them in suspended animation for 100 years; until Sokka and Katara released them. Katara cracked the iceberg open, ending the Aang Avatar State and Aang’s time in the iceberg.
At The Southern Air Temple
The next time Aang enters the Avatar State is in season 1, episode 3, when he visits the Southern Air Temple with Katara and Sokka. It is here that he learns Firebenders killed his former teacher, Monk Gyatso, while Aang was in the iceberg. Aang’s emotions cause him to enter the State again, but Katara manages to calm him down with the reassurance that Aang isn’t alone anymore.
The Avatar State At The Fire Temple
We see the Aang Avatar State again during season 1, episode 8. This was the third time, but we got to see a new dimension to what Aang could do in the Avatar state. He takes on the form of Avatar Roku when the team visits the Fire Temple; which had a sanctuary that allowed Aang to connect to his predecessor. Roku then used his firebending to save Katara and Sokka and also destroy the temple.
During The Storm
Aang is next shown entering the State during a large storm in season 1, episode 12. The storm comes while Sokka is out on the sea with fishermen and all of their lives are put in danger. Aang and Katara fly through the storm on Appa’s back to save them and rescue Sokka and the fishermen. Unfortunately, the storm sends them all crashing into the ocean. Aang re-enters the Avatar State here to use Airbending to create a protective sphere around them so they don’t drown.
Aang Avatar State At The Northern Water Tribe
The next time we see the Aang Avatar State, we follow the team to the Northern Water Tribe; and it was epic. It was the greatest showcase of Aang’s ability up to that point when using the Avatar State. As the Fire Nation are invading the Northern Water Tribe, events lead to Admiral Zhao killing the Moon Spirit’s mortal koi fish form. In aanger *wink*, Aang enters the State, combining himself with the Ocean Spirit.
Together they formed a giant koi fish made of water. Aang then uses his increased power to wipe out the Fire Nation fleet, saving the Northern Water Tribe. This connection to the Ocean Spirit ends however, once the Moon Spirit is restored by Princess Yue’s sacrifice.
Aang Saves Katara
The first episode of season 2 of Avatar: The Last Airbender shows Aang entering the State again to save Katara. General Fong of the Earth Kingdom pushes Aang to learn to master the State and uses Katara as bait to trigger the State. Fong tricks him into believing he killed Katara and Aang’s emotions activate the Avatar State again. Aang can’t control it, even after Katara is confirmed to be alive, and destroys his surroundings.
Following Appa’s Disappearance
The Aang Avatar State comes up again at the middle of Season 2, as he confronts the sandbenders that kidnapped Appa. The Earthbenders stole the flying bison, and then sold him; but they do not know where he can be found. Aang is so infuriated with this that he enters the State immediately. Katara manages to calm Aang down before he hurts anyone, although he does destroy the thieves’ mode of transportation.
As Aang Fights Zuko & Azula
The season 2 finale of The Last Airbender sees Aang enter the State again. After not being able to let go of his attachment to Katara in exchange for cosmic power, Aang believed he wouldn’t be able to master the State. But, when a fight with Zuko and Azula turns dire, Aang decides to let go of Katara so he can save them all. Aang enters the Avatar State ready to defeat the Fire Nation, but Azula hits him in the back with her lightning. Katara manages to save his life by using spirit water to heal him, but Aang remains unconscious for weeks anyway.
Aang Avatar State Appears When Aang Fights The Fire Lord
We don’t see the Aang Avatar State in the third book/ third season except in the final episode; the series finale. Here, he battles Fire Lord Ozai in a final confrontation; as Sozin’s comet powers the firebenders all around them. The Aang Avatar State only appears as Aang enters it near the end of the battle. Using the Avatar state gives Aang a lot of power over the Fire Lord, but he doesn’t want to kill Ozai. Instead he exits the Avatar State before dealing a deadly blow. Aang then uses energybending to strip Ozai of his bending.
When He Takes On Yakone In the Legend of Korra
The last time Aang is known to have entered the State comes in season 1, episode 9 of The Legend of Korra. Aang is shown fighting a bloodbender named Yakone, who initially gets the best of the Avatar. Aang enters the State once more to chase down Yakone, and the power kicks in again when the bloodbender attempts to snap his neck. The Avatar State saved Aang’s life and allowed him to take Yakone’s bending abilities away.